Conference on cancer research in the USA
by Sonja Bergmann
Thanks to the support of the MINGS I got the opportunity to attend a conference abroad for the first time and to deliver my own scientific contribution. The AACR Annual Meeting 2019 is one of the largest congresses worldwide in the field of cancer research. Therefore, attending this conference was an enrichment for my career in the field.
The size of the congress was indeed overwhelming. During the main days of the meeting there were so many participants (in total about 22.500) in the huge congress center that one had to plan enough time for the ways between the individual rooms and exhibition halls. There were many parallel events and exhibitions at any one time, so the timetable that everyone had created in the meeting app was very helpful. There were many presentations of the papers on my subject. Since the Nobel Prize was awarded in my field last year, it was also very interesting for me to see one of the two prize winners there. I also got to know some scientists whose publications are very relevant for my research. Especially during the presentation of my poster I had the opportunity to exchange ideas with them. In general, I was pleasantly surprised at how many people showed interest in my work and sought dialogue. There were some contacts I found at the conference that I would like to maintain. In any case, my participation gave me inspiration and motivation for my research work and expanded my network.
Presentation of my research results on a poster
I would advise any doctoral student or young scientist to take part in an international conference. In my opinion, this experience should definitely be part of the training of young scientists. MINGS is one of the institutions supporting this. In my case, the funding covered the costs for the flight and the accommodation shared with colleagues. Since the hotel prices in Atlanta are very high, we rented an apartment via AirBnB. This was so centrally located that we could walk to the convention center every day.
Finally, I can highly recommend to future participants of the AACR Annual Meeting to get well acquainted with the program in advance. The on-site offer is so varied that one can easily miss relevant events. It is also worth registering for thematically appropriate satellite meetings.